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Topics - plongeur66

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DIY/Fix-It Up/Repair / Kindle Demos
« on: June 17, 2017, 11:28:51 AM »
Found a Kindle Paperwhite demo at one of my stops. Supposedly some are easy to return to full functionality by typing ";resell" (without the quotes) in the search box. No dice for my unit, still a demo.
Then I found this info online:
Ordered a USB-to-serial adapter from China for a buck, hopefully gets here within a month. This should be any easy project, takes me back to my phone flashing and unlocking days about 15 years ago. People apparently have no problems registering the serial numbers on the river. They apparently expect refurbed/recycled units to come back online and don't blacklist them unless reported stolen. Demos selling for ~$25 on feebay, some people are buying in bulk to restore and resell.

Dumpster Diving Tips / Employee Stashes
« on: June 14, 2017, 11:05:00 PM »
I've seen a spike in stuff being "set aside" in recent months.
A complete working CPAP machine and Win 7 laptop in the Badwill bin. Also a bunch of small audio and video adapters with the cords tied together so somebody could just grab the whole "octopus" at once. Sitting front and center in the bin. Remainder of bin contents were all actual garbage.
Over $1000 of ink and 10 128GB flash drives neatly slid into a large carry out bag just behind the side door of the office store bin. Everything sealed, ink expires 2019, no destroy tags on anything. Once again, nothing good anywhere else in the bin.
Was approaching a Harbr Fret stop when I heard squealing sounds and saw a flashing light coming from the bushes. Found a 17 amp-hour jump starter with return tag that somebody had put in a brown paper bag and stashed for later. I would have never noticed it if the battery hadn't run low giving rise to the noise and light show.
I'm sure these people weren't happy when they found out that their toys had walked away...

You've probably seen the battery-powered sanitizing wands around. They are very low power, cost upwards of $50, and will only work for a few minutes at a time. You can get germicidal bulbs that will fit in linear fluorescent fixtures like under-cabinet lights and portable blacklight fixtures. Putting 4-foot germicidal bulbs into a shop light gives you a serious decontamination chamber. Leave the room immediately when powering up these lights, they can mess up your hide and eyes.
I use these lights when I pick up stuff like towels and bedding. Be aware that only organisms exposed directly to the light will be killed. Thin or light colored blankets will be effectively sanitized, but something lurking inside of a couch or thick comforter would not be affected.

Trash Talk / Is It Real?
« on: May 13, 2017, 07:27:56 AM »
Found in a Gameshtupf bin, very good condition:

Trash Talk / Rich & Desperate?
« on: April 24, 2017, 11:43:32 PM »
Was approaching one of my sites last week, spotted a silver Infiniti parked where I wasn't expecting a car to be. After confirming nobody was in it, I continue approaching the bin....until I see a flashlight beam wandering around. I head into some woods alongside to watch/wait. Guy puts a small item in his trunk, I couldn't see what it was. Just as he leaves a late model white Cadillac comes around the corner. Guy in a suit gets out and also scopes out the bin with a flashlight. No dice for him...or me. As I'm walking back to my car a black Porsche comes gliding around the corner with headlights off. I bust out laughing. 4 people hit that bin in a 5 minute period, that's probably busier than the store's checkout line on Black Friday. ;D The repo man can't be far behind if those guys are relying on dumpsters to keep up on their payments. Fortunately my garbage scow is paid for.

DIY/Fix-It Up/Repair / Tablet Screens
« on: April 13, 2017, 05:36:25 AM »
So I dived some tablets including one of these puppies with a busted touchscreen:
Researched online to find out you need at least 200F degrees to soften the glue holding the LCD and touchscreen together. 230 degrees will burn the LCD. A hair dryer won't go beyond 150 degrees, so is useless. A heat gun gets plenty hot enough, but there's major risk of burning the LCD and/or nearby plastic parts.
I decided to put the tablet in my gas oven, used this dived digital smokehouse thermometer to make sure things didn't overheat:

I removed the motherboard and battery, put the frame in the oven for 5 minutes between 190 and 200 degrees.  Was able to lift up the glass about an eighth of an inch, then slowly worked sideways a couple of inches with a small screwdriver blade. I had cut a plastic gift card into 1/4 inch wide strips, I slid these in between the glass and frame to keep the glass from gluing itself down again. Slow going, I put the frame back in the oven for 5 minutes every time I'd loosened up another couple of inches. It eventually comes apart with no apparent damage to the LCD or other tablet parts. Speakers fell out due to their adhesive softening, but went back in easily.
$23 digitizer on order from China, should be here by the end of next month.
I did put a couple extra cracks in the already broken digitizer, no biggie. A broken digitizer with good LCD is the most likely scenario you'll encounter. The trickiest scenario is if you try to separate a good digitizer from a bad LCD without breaking the former. I would likely have heated up to 220 degrees in this case to get the glue really soft.
Here are some other dived goodies:
A working 8 inch tablet that I'm using as an audio player for my talk radio shows, Zagg keyboard dived last year:

I had to reinstall the drivers for this via USB. I went to use the camera feature. Rear camera worked fine. I switched to the front camera, causing it to bluescreen, reboot and delete all it's drivers again. Guess I won't be using the front camera.
Keyboard for another 10 inch tablet:

Also a no-name 7 inch tablet with both motherboard and screen smashed. Battery pack consisted of 2 2500MAH pouch batteries connected in parallel. I harvested them and put them into a $4 large USB battery bank case that was intended for 6 laptop cells:

Battery chemistry/charging voltage is identical between the pouch batteries and cylindrical laptop cells.

I bought a couple of cheap lights ($3) to try and put to use the 18650 lithium cells I've been harvesting from laptop batteries. One died, and the other started flickering/acting stupid after two nights out each. I should have known better. Better to spend $50 on one good light than to spend $5 to $10 apiece replacing cheapos on a monthly basis.
Back in the day, I would buy generic consumer lights (Ray-O-Vac, Eveready, Duracell, Coleman, etc. Even LED Maglites for $15 each).
None of them ever lived for 3 months. My 2AA alkaline-powered Olight I25 is still working fine after about 5 years and ~50 drops onto blacktop. I just bought this Thrunite TN12 to put my 18650 laptop cells to use:
I grabbed the 2016 model, updated from the 2014 version in the review. I'm impressed after a couple of nights out. The 18 lumen LOW mode is plenty bright enough to light up a bin without flushing the birds out of the trees across the parking lot. 1100 lumen max is brighter than a car high beam, I don't expect to ever need anything that bright.
I selected the "Neutral White" tint, which is  real white (rather than blue or yellow). Very easy to see and grade dumpster food by. The "necrosis blue" 12K tint of cheap lights makes it impossible to discern rotten meat or see mold on baked goods. I haven't dropped or sent this one flying yet - hopefully it keeps on firing.

The Dung Heap / Where's The Beef?
« on: February 24, 2017, 05:06:50 AM »

Trash Talk / Nice Ambience In This Dumpster House....
« on: February 17, 2017, 01:59:22 PM »
...makes me want to get one myself:  :)

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